Association of Papal Orders in Ireland - Newsletter - Vol1 - Ed6 - February 2021

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Association of Papal Orders in Ireland

Volume 1 - Edition 6 - February 2021

Patron: Seán Cardinal Brady Daily Prayer

From the President:

Lord Jesus, make me a loving and courageous member of the Pontifical Order of Blessed Pius/ Saint Gregory / Saint Sylvester. May I ever be an inspiring example to others to be faithful to you, your teaching and the teaching of your Church. May I look on those teachings as your very own and, when necessary, have the courage to defend them against attacks from any source. After a life of faithful service on earth, may you welcome me to your Heavenly home and the happiness of eternal life. Amen. (This is also on our website, and a credit card size hardcopy is available from the Secretary.)

Dear Dames and Knights,

Mass Cards An Association Mass card is available for purchase at a cost of €12.75 per pack of ten. It will be up to the user to have the Mass offered by a local priest. Please contact the Secretary.

Diary 2021 Saturday 27 February Mass - The link is Sunday 4 July Annual Procession in honour of St Oliver Plunkett, 3pm in Drogheda (Subject to any Covid regulations) Date to be determined Proposed virtual AGM October possible Annual Mass and dinner (Subject to any Covid regulations)Contact details for the Mass to honour St Oliver Plunkett at 4.00 on the feastday. A website exclusively dedicated to St Oliver is at The logo of the Association (top-left) is designed by Thomas Ryan RHA. The crests of the various Papal Orders are displayed on the top-right.

Those of you who had the opportunity to participate virtually at our Mass for deceased members, celebrated by our chaplain, Msgr Eoin Thynne, and streamed from the church of St. Jude the Apostle, Templeogue, Dublin on Saturday 17 October last, participated in the most recent event of our Association. You will have heard me say on that occasion that, in Council, we had decided to issue a further Newsletter as soon as prevailing conditions existed enabling us to give at least tentative proposals for our activity plans in 2021. Realistically, even assuming the completion of a high and satisfactory level of vaccination in society by the end of summer, we believe it problematic to plan for any meeting of members present in person at this time. Given such circumstances, we are conscious that important governance matters need to be considered and we address them in this Newsletter. It has been our practice to hold, annually in February, a Mass for persecuted Christians-particularly for those in Iraq and in the neighbouring Middle East. Last year you will recall that we had the joy of being joined by some of the Iraqi community in Ireland for this event. This year , because of the pandemic restrictions , Members can only “attend” by participating via the “live streaming” of this liturgy, scheduled for 12noon on Saturday, 27 February next, to be celebrated by Msgr Eoin from the Church of St. Jude the Apostle. Please do try and join us at that time. At another spiritual level, I would like to draw the attention of all Members that Pope Francis has given the Church a lovely gift of proclaiming a special year of St. Joseph, which commenced on 8 December last, on the 150th anniversary of the Proclamation of St. Joseph as Patron of the Universal Church. He has written an Apostolic Letter-Patris Corde (“With a Father’s Heart”), so as “to increase our love for this great saint, to encourage us to implore his intercession and to imitate his virtues and his zeal.” As we know the greatness of St. Joseph is that he is the spouse of Mary and the father of Jesus, devoting himself totally to them in his life and work and in this way placed himself “at the service of the entire plan of salvation”. He teaches us that amid the troubles of life we must never be afraid to let the Lord steer our course. Pope Francis clearly has a very deep devotion to St. Joseph which he seeks to encourage in us and, from his letter, we learn the words of the daily prayer he has made to him for over forty years. As papal Dames and Knights, Pope Francis plants a lovely thought for our prayerful consideration-that we should always consider whether we ourselves are protecting Jesus and Mary for they also are mysteriously entrusted to our own responsibility, care and safekeeping. Let us specifically invoke St. Joseph throughout his special year. Wishing you every Blessing,


John B Morgan, KSG

From the Secretary:

Dear Dames and Knights, As our President indicated earlier, we shall have a live streamed Mass for persecuted Christians on Saturday 27 February at 12.00 noon. Participation from the Church may be achieved from your PC by the stream from the Church. You will recall that in July 2016 two men forced 86-year-old Father Jacques Hamel, to his knees, slit his throat and filmed themselves appearing to preach. The attack was at the church of SaintÉtienne-du-Rouvray, near Rouen. The Association subsequently arranged for Mass to be celebrated yearly for persecuted and martyred Christians. Wednesday 17 February next we commence the season of Lent. It is still unclear whether or not, for a second year, we spend Holy Week and Easter in isolation, away from family members, parish and the sacraments. We sincerely hope that all of you are managing, with the Lord’s help, to stay safe and well and able to keep in available touch with those you love.

Contact details for the Mass for Persecuted Christians

Our chaplain, Msgr Eoin Thynne, will celebrate this Mass for us at 12 noon. Click on, from where it will be streamed, and the altar area will become evident.

Governance of the Association

In 2020 we had to defer the Annual Meeting scheduled for 18 April and subsequent lockdowns precluded us holding such meeting. A result of this is that elections to Council were not undertaken-and this three year event, as required by our Statutes, did not take place. Additionally, the death of our Chancellor, Jim McDonald, took place in November 2019. At a Council meeting held in January 2020 Tom Lynch, in addition to being the non-elected member of Council, agreed to become acting Chancellor, pending the expected holding of the AGM scheduled for 18 April 2020. Tom, as you know, unexpectedly died last April. All this has led to a reduction in Council membership, which is not in conformity with our Statutes. It is the proposal of Council that we proceed to recommend an amendment in our Statutes to specifically enable the holding of “incorporeal” General Meetings of Members so that we can proceed to have an AGM, with Council elections, in due course during this year, if in the opinion of Council, a General Meeting of members in person, cannot or ought not , on reasonable grounds, take place. We will communicate with you on this point presently. On governance generally, we are also cognisant that Dr. Con Power FCCA resigned as honorary auditor last year, having audited our accounts for year ended 2019 and we have received confirmation that John Coleman FCCA has agreed to replace Dr. Power.

Membership & Death

It is a joy to record the appointment by the Holy Father of three new members to our ranks, Joan Walshe Navan as a Dame of St Sylvester, John Brennan as a Knight of St Sylvester and Gerald Harbinson as a Knight of St Gregory the Great. Due to lockdowns Joan and Gerald’s conferrals have not yet taken place. The obituaries of our three deceased conferes are in this volume.

Papal Diploma

On the reverse of the Diploma are the unique numerals associated with Award as issued by the Secretariat of State. Older Diplomas have the numerals in pencil or ink. In recent years there is a hologram with the unique numbering. These numbers might be recorded in your diary in the event that the original is misplaced or destroyed.


Peter Durnin, KC*SG

From the archives

Reception with the President of Ireland, November 2004, Tom MacKenna KSS†, Vy Rev Timothy Bartlett, Perter Durnin KC*SG, Michael McGrath GCSG†, Liam Murphy KCSG†, Fonsey McEntagart KCSG†

1988: John Harrington KCSG, Tom Sheahan GCSG† and the late Bishop Jeremiah Newman†. President Seán T. Ó Ceallaigh, wearing the sash of the Order of St. Gregory. With permission from the Presidential Establishment.

Peadar Murphy KSS, Jim McDonald KC*SG† and James Doherty KSS†. Peadar celebrates his 94th birthday in April. Donal Lydon KC*SG, Charles Kelly KCSS, Nicholas McKenna KCSG, Peter Durnin KC*SG, Donal Downes KC*SG† and Charles McDonald KCSG.

Kathleen and Joe Kennedy KCSG. Mass for deceased members, October 2020, Church of St. Jude the Apostle. Edward Gleeson KSG† Solicitor to Archbishop McQuaid

John Kennedy KSG

† Denotes deceased

The Belvedere Newsboys’ Club: Serving The Youth Of Dublin’s Inner City Since 1918 Belvedere College Past Pupils Union, led by Dr. William Lombard Murphy, son of William Martin Murphy who was Union President at the time. The Union members saw the need for a club where the many young newsvendors, most of them being barefooted, sold their papers on the streets of Dublin. The boys took on this task to supplement; the meagre family income and lived in the most appalling conditions in the Dublin tenements. The club provided a warm, friendly atmosphere where the boys could assemble each week and enjoy the friendship of their peers and the club helpers who were all referred to as ‘Doc’ by the members. The boys enjoyed indoor and outdoor games and classes in mathematics, writing and other subjects, as the need arose, and a hot supper. In November 1918 the club took over another club, the Catholic Technical Working Boys’ Club, which closed because of shortage of staff. There were now up to a hundred boys on the club roll. The club was officially named the Belvedere Newsboys’ Club in 1926 and in 1928 bought a substantial three-storey house at 198, Pearse St. which was our base until 1960. The club continued to be staffed by volunteer past students of Belvedere College. Mass was celebrated for the first time in the club in 1929 and thereafter on the occasion of annual retreats and on the Feast of Corpus Christi. Short prayers were recited as the boys went home each night. The Easter Retreat started in 1927 and continued without a break until it was cancelled in 2020 due to the lockdown. Confessions were heard for many years on the Thursday before the First Friday and at Easter and Christmas. A boot-repair shop with a professional instructor was started in 1936 and the boys repaired their own shoes and those of their families. They also made wallets and comb holders etc. In 1941 we organised a summer camp in Termonfeckin, Co. Louth, under canvas for over 60 boys and this became an annual event until we bought a ten-bedroomed bungalow in Blackwater, Co. Wexford in 1999. In 1960 we moved to Marlborough St. to a fine pair of houses with twenty-one rooms and a stage and the club continued to expand. In 1969 the name was changed to the Belvedere Youth Club and in 1972 we admitted girls to the club as full members. As our premises became unsuitable for our needs the College Union came to our assistance and raised £650,000 in two years and in 1992 we moved to our custom-built premises at 41, Lower Buckingham St. The numbers increased ·and we now cater for almost 400 boys and girls aged from 7 to 20 years. Computer classes are very popular and useful for the members. We are open five afternoons and five evenings a week and about eighty members of the homework group get a hot meal every day.

Dublin football legend, Michael Darragh MacAuley, with some Belvedere Youth Club boys and girls (source: Facebook)

No 198 Pearse Street

We marked our Centenary Year on October 20th. 2018 with a special Mass of Thanksgiving celebrated by Archbishop Diarmuid Martin, Archbishop of Dublin, followed by a reception. It is a matter of great satisfaction to the club leaders to know that many of the past members who have done well in life openly attribute their success to their membership of the Belvedere Newsboys’ (Youth) Club. Gerry Walsh KSG.

Gerry graduated from Belvedere in 1950 and immediately volunteered as a helper in the Belvedere Newsboys’ Club He became an active committee member and served as Honorary Secretary for many years. He was appointed Director of the club for the period 1960/65. For the past forty years he has looked after the Old Boys’ section, organising events including the Easter Retreat and the November Mass for deceased members. In his ‘spare time’ he wrote a history of the club called “How ya Doc?” Gerry was elected President of the Belvedere College Union for the year 2005/06 and was invested as a Knight of St. Gregory by Cardinal Desmond Connell in November 2006. After seventy-one years of service Gerry is still involved in the club. Peter Durnin

Book Review by the Secretary The Irish Brigade in the Pope’s Army 1860 By Donal Corcoran, Four Courts Press, 2018 pages 246. Bibliography and index. Reading this book brought happy memories of visits to Spoleto, Perugia and Ancona. The book served as a good companion in Perugia and would have been an excellent guide in Ancona, a major port on the Adriatic, and the hilltop city, as it now is, of Spoleto. Another oddity is that in the cemetery close to my home is the final resting place of Pte Kelly, the bugler at the Battle of Spoleto, and on the now State owned Oldbridge Estate, location of the Battle of the Boyne, was the home of Lt Heaney, known locally as the Pope Heaney, who fought in Ancona, a Knight of St Sylvester although not listed a knight. Another papal knight, this time of St Gregory, was Capt Myles Keogh, who died with Custer at the Battle of the Little Big Horn. 1860 was a crucial year in the Risorgimento, the creation of the modern Italian state. Pope Pius IX called for volunteers to expand his army and to defend his domain. Among those who responded to his call were 1,100 Irishmen – somewhat inaccurately known as the Papal Irish Brigade. Why this topic might be of interest to members of the Association relates to the award to some 70 Irish participants of papal knighthoods of Sylvester, Gregory and the Pian Order. Most, but not all, of these are listed in Appendix C of the book. The participants were originally from nearly every county in Ireland. The book will be of interest to readers who wish to learn of the Irish contribution to the Italian war of reunification. Wider accounts of Irish participation include The Irish and English in Italy’s Risorgimento by Mary Jane Cryan, published in Italy; The Pope’s Legion by Charles A Coulombe published in the US, Nation/Nazione: Irish nationalism and the Italian Risorgimento, edited by Colin Barr, Michele Finelli and Anne O’ Connor, UCD Press 2014 with a fine chapter by Msgr Ciarán O’Carroll and finally, the magisterial The Irish Battalion in the Papal Army of 1860, 1929, by G F-H Berkeley.

In Memoriam

Thomas Lynch

KSG, gazetted 13 February, 2013 Tom Lynch, whose sudden and untimely death occurred on 1st April 2020, was a man superabundantly gifted. He was admitted as a member of the Order of St. Gregory the Great in 2013 and also served as Chancellor of the Equestrian Order of the Holy Sepulchre of Jerusalem since January, 2018. In the latter role he contributed significantly to “the Living Stones”. Born in North Belfast in 1956, evidence of his gifts did not delay in coming. Head Boy at St. Malachy’s College, where his already strong faith was further nourished, he went on to read economics at Queens University and served a two year stint as President of the Students Union (1978-80). Coming to Dublin in 1980, he joined what was to become one of the “Big Four” international accountancy practices. Within ten years he became a Partner. His entrepreneurial flair led him on to gain very considerable stature within the pharmaceutical and biotechnology sectors both in Ireland and internationally, with particular expertise in clinical research organisation. He put his expertise at the service of the national economy when appointed a director of the IDA in 2000, serving thru’ 2010. Parallel with his financial acumen came more gifts, laced with generosity and commitment - a gift of helping others, a gift of voluntarism and philanthropy. He was also a patron of the arts. He gave significant service to the Voluntary Hospital sector, in turn a director of St. Vincent’s Hospital and also The Mater Misericordiae University Hospital. He became Chairperson of The Mater on 1 January 2015, making an enormous contribution in his single-minded pursuit of its mission and ethos. He was Chair of the Ireland East Group of hospitals. Few will be aware of the extent of his generosity to his Church and to many beneficiaries of his personal help and kindness. He had a warm demeanour and personal charm. He had the ability to meet difficult challenges and decisions thru’ seeking consensus with his deeply irenic style. It is difficult to give adquete justice in summing up his multifaceted personal and private characteristics in a single statement. Our hearts go out to Deirdre, his wife, to his daughters, Jennifer and Rebecca, and to his son, Mark, for whom his loss is irreparable. His busy world has hushed. He now knows the mission he was given. The manner of his life gives fitting evidence that he will be justly and generously rewarded by his Lord. May he rest in that peace.

John Hume (1937-2020)

KCSG, Gazetted 8 June 2012. John Hume entered this world at a time when Northern Ireland was embroiled in pervasive religious sectarianism and hatred. This engendered in him a life-long abhorrence of violence and social injustice which underpinned his enduring mantra in later life of civil and political redress through peaceful means. Born in 1937; he like his other notable Derry compatriots Seamus Heaney, Bishop Edward Daly and Phil Coulter were among the first generation of Catholics to receive free secondary education under the British Education Act of 1947. Following his early education, John entered St Patrick’s College, Maynooth, but did not complete his clerical studies for the priesthood, having redirected his vocation through marriage in 1960 to Patricia, a wife who was to be his close advisor and rock of strength in years to come. He remarked that his course in logic served him well in later years. Locally, he established much-needed Credit Unions in Derry to address the crippling money-lending culture in the city. His role as elected representative of the people at home and in Europe facilitated the creation of vital coalitions and

John at his installation in 2012, with his wife Pat, Chev. Don Lydon, Prof. Vincent McBrierty.

In Memoriam networks of interest in USA and Europe in his mission to create a lasting peace. Acknowledging the need to talk to his political opponents, he also had the courage and vision to draw militant Republicanism into dialogue and engagement in the political process: in so doing he incurred significant risk to himself and his family, driven by his inflexible commitment to non-violence. These political achievements culminated in the Good Friday Agreement on April 10, 1998 which was a formidable step towards a lasting peace. It was no surprise that these activities eventually took their toll in later life when John contracted dementia. His achievements were recognised worldwide with endless awards including the Nobel Prize. President Clinton referred to him as Ireland’s Martin Luther King Jr. He was indeed a legend in his own lifetime. The last word is left to his dear friend Seamus Heaney: ‘John Hume made hope and history rhyme. He was the once in a lifetime oak tree who rose up with a longed-for tidal wave of justice.’ May he rest in peace.

Dr Thomas McGinley,

KSG, gazetted 3 July, 2001 Medical doctor. Born in Brooklyn New York in December, 1934, died 28 January 2021. He grew up in Gweedore, Co Donegal. Founder of the Foyle Hospice, a native Irish speaker, worked as a GP in Derry for 35 years. After attending secondary school in Letterkenny he went on to study medicine before moving to Derry in 1960 to work in the hospital ahead of a career in general practice for the next 35 years. The Mayor of Derry City and Strabane District Council, Cllr Brian Tierney, opened an online Book of Condolence for members of the public to share their tributes and thanks to Dr Tom McGinley, founder of the Foyle Hospice. Dr McGinley set up a small steering committee in 1984 to fundraise before officially opening the Foyle Hospice in the city in 1985 and, since that opening, the deeply-valued palliative care centre has been a source of great comfort and assistance to thousands of families across not only the city, but the entire district. Dr McGinley was honoured for his selfless and life-changing work by Derry City Council in 2014 when he was awarded the prestigious Freedom of Derry. He has a sculpture in his honour in St Columb’s Park. It was after an encounter with a young man with terminal cancer that Dr McGinley pursued the idea of opening a palliative care facility in the city. He was spurred on to develop Derry’s healthcare facilities after reading an article in the Belfast Telegraph about a charity run for the Northern Ireland Hospice. “I thought to myself, this money has to stop going to Belfast,” he previously told this newspaper. That Belfast Telegraph article in the summer of 1983 sparked his campaign to create and run the Foyle Hospice, with the support of Catholic and Protestant churches in the city. Four years later, the Orange Order sold its site overlooking the banks of the River Foyle on Derry’s west bank to the hospice. It has treated tens of thousands of terminally ill people since it was opened in June 1991 by two young girls, one a Catholic and the other a Protestant, whose mothers had both died of cancer. In retirement Dr McGinley continued his work with the hospice. He was also a familiar figure running the roads of the city for many years as a keen jogger. May he raise to glory.

New Conferrals 2020

Dr William Ryan, KSS, Archdiocese of Cashel and Emly 1928 - 1999

Gerald Harbinson, Knight of St Gregory the Great

(Diocese of Down & Connor)

John Brennan, Knight of St Sylvester (Diocese of Meath)

Joan Walshe, Dame of St Sylvester (Diocese of Meath)

Feast Days

Joseph Charleton KSG, FCA Archdiocese of Dublin 1914-1983

associated with recipients of Papal Orders St Gregory the Great: September 3rd St Sylvester: December 31st

Council of the Association

Gerald Harbinson, the newest member to be appointed Knight of St Gregory the Great, the seventh Papal Knight created in the Diocese of Down and Connor

2017 John B Morgan KSG President Vacant Chancellor Peter Durnin KC*SG Secretary Gerard Walsh KSG Treasurer Vacant Member Msgr Eoin Thynne Chaplain The Association may be contacted through its Secretary, Peter F Durnin, “Rosaire”, Moneymore, Drogheda, Co Louth. A92 RF6F email: Kindly designed by: Eric Dumas (

Ireland's youngest Papal Knight, John Brennan, KSS, after his investiture Mass with the Bishop of Meath, Most Rev'd Tom Deenihan

Change of address/ email

Have you changed your details in recent times. If so may I ask you to alert me to same. I am particularly aware that many former users of the Eircom email have recently commenced to use a gmail account (or other providers). As you will see I have changed mine to peternora12281@

“Bumper” Edition

Last year, due to COVID and the cancellation of various events, only the Spring edition of the newsletter was published. This early Spring Edition which is double the usual length, will hopefully brings matter up to date.